Pennsylvania does your RV stink?

Have you ever walked into a stale RV and wondered where the smell is coming from? Or are you trying to remove a smell in your RV after a long winter storage? The various smells and odors that form in RVs can be removed and taken care of. Here are 8 tips to removing bad odors from your RV.

1. Sewer Smell in the Bathroom
There are tons of chemicals that eliminate RV toilet odor on the market, each catering to the different ways your tank is dumped. Sometimes they work, and sometimes they don’t help at all! Good ventilation for the black water tank is a must. The tank is vented out the roof of an RV. When traveling down the road, the wind can push wind down through that ventalation pipe, pushing the smell back into the RV instead of drawing out the odor. So…what do you do? You can install a special sewer vent that is designed to suck the odor out of the black tank with only a small breeze. See your local dealership to find out if they carry these special sewer vents.

2. Kitchen and Bathroom Drain Odors
When your trailer is not in use, water trapped in the P-traps under every sink and the shower can grow bacteria, spreading the smell throughout your RV. To keep the smell from forming, mix a cup of baking soda with a gallon of water. Pour the mixture down every drain and then dump what’s left into the kitchen sink so the mixture will go into the gray water tank too.

3. Rodent Odors in your RV
Dead rodents can be one of the worst smells in your RV. To remove the odor, find the dead rodent and remove it. Then scrub the area well, making sure to remove the odor and the bacteria/diseases that might have been left.

4. Bad Smelling Potable RV Water
When your water from your fresh water tank starts to smell or taste bad, it’s time to clean out the water system. The only way to get the fresh water tank system clean is to sanitize your RV water system with a diluted mixture of household bleach and water (make sure to rinse out the bleach mixture completely from your fresh water tank before use). If you keep having bad water issues in your fresh water tank system, consider installing a water filtration system.

5. Smelly RV Carpet and Pet Odors
The best way to remove smelly or pet stained carpets in your RV is to tear it out and replace it with laminate flooring. If you can’t afford to replace your carpet, another option is to get your carpet professionally cleaned. Invest in throw rugs to help keep your carpets clean and fresh as long as possible. You can also get your upholstery professionally cleaned, helping to eliminate any odors on your furniture too.

6. RV Refrigerator & Freezer Odors
To avoid a mildew or stale smell in your refrigerator and freezer, wipe down the inside with soap and water after every trip. Then leave the refrigerator and freezer doors left ajar to allow all moisture to evaporate. Leave either a shallow bowl or a box of baking soda in both the fridge and freezer will also help absorb any odors that may develop.

7. Stale RV Smells from Non-Use
If your RV has sat around for a while without regular use, a stale smell will start to appear. It’s usually smells, on top of smells, on top of smells! All in all…your RV needs to breath! Installing vent covers over the existing roof vents allows you to leave the roof vents open slightly, letting the hot stale air escape. Solar powered vents can also help you draw out the air more efficiently too. Removing the entire stale odor from your RV also involves doing steps 1 thru 6 and cleaning every surface in your RV. There are products on the market that claim they deodorized storage and mildew odors, but cleaning with regular household products work just as well.

8. Propane and Ammonia Odors
These two odors can mean big problems! If you start to smell a strong ammonia odor, the source will be the cooling unit of your refrigerator. The ammonia odor will be strong enough to bring tears to your eyes. There is really nothing you can do to fix it on your own. You’ll need to see the Service Department at your local Dealership, and be prepared for it to be expensive.

Propane odor can come from many areas and sources in and around your RV. Like the propane tanks, stove, oven, refrigerator, water heater, furnace, etc and the all lines that connect these appliances to the tanks as well. In order to detect a leak around the fittings, use a small brush and soapy water. Make sure to have adequate ventilation before you go looking for a propane problem. If you’re ever in doubt, call the Service Department at your local Central PA RV Dealership.

YOUTUBE VIDEO: Watch “How to Control Moisture and Musty Smells in an RV” from Gary Bunzer, the RV Doctor.

 

RV Odors: How to get rid of RV odors by the RV Doctor

**These tips for how to remove odors in your RV came from “RV Odor Problems: How to Remove 10 Different Odors from your RV” written by Curtis in the RV Section on the thefuntimesguide.com website.

Camping Season is here!

Open Range Rolling Thunder H 397 RGR at Lerch RV

Camping Season is here.Whether you camp in a tent or a Open Range Rolling Thunder. Maintenance is a must....

Many of us are in full camping mode.  With the unofficial start of Summer, Memorial Day, already a past us.  Our service department is has been getting some customer calls on a few items.  I decided to gather up some of those items and share them with you.  The items below are something that all RV owners should keep an eye on.  Once again, my belief that a little preventative maintenance goes a very long way.

  • RV Water heater bypass valves. These must be in the proper position to ensure that water fills the water heater tank. Ensure the tank is filled before turning on the water heater as you could damage the electric heating element or the water tank itself by overheating an empty tank.
  • Roll up your RV awning in windy conditions or if you are to be away from the campsite. It is an easy thing to do (especially with the newer electric awnings) to ensure that your awning does not get damaged by the wind.  Or worse yet flip-up and over your camper damaging the structure.
  • RV/Marine Battery water levels. With many people leaving their campers plugged in over the summer for extended periods, it is important to maintain your battery’s water levels so they do not boil off. Check them frequently to ensure proper levels and top off with distilled water or recommended fluids.
  • Sealants. Inspect your seams around windows, doors, vents, and wall corners to ensure that the caulking is not cracked and leaving voids. Keep a tube of RV Caulking handy in your camper to seal any found voids. It takes 15-20 minutes to check over a whole camper, but, will ensure your camper weathers the storm for decades.
  • RV AC Coils. Get up on your camper roof safely and inspect the AC coils and remove debris. If needed get the coils straightened so that your AC runs more efficiently ensuring you have a cool place to sleep out of the heat. However do keep in mind if the weather decides to creep up to near record high temperatures and high humidity levels, your RV air conditioning unit may work extremely hard trying to keep you cool. After this past Memorial Day, with its record heat index, many RV owners called complaining that their AC units were not functioning properly.

If you are unsure about tackling any of the above RV maintenance issues above by yourself.  Please give Lerch RV’s service department a call at 800-722-1236.  Our qualified technicians will gladly answer any questions that you might have.  And if you decide you do not want to do the work yourself, schedule an appointment when you call.

Safe Travels and Happy RVing!

The ‘dirty’ on cleaning your black water holding tank.

OK, this isn’t one of the prettiest posts I’ve made, but it is an important one. Without getting into the gutter about the “dirty” details of flushing your black water holding tank, I found a pretty good video with some really nice products that will make this dirty job a little more tolerable. Cleaning your black water tank for your RV is important for the lifespan of your tank, personal hygiene and comfortable living while camping. There are not many steps for keeping your RV black water tank clean, but it’s important to be consistent in following them. Keeping up on proper maintenance is what will keep you from spending lots of money or many unpleasant hours on repairing your tank. You may be surprised how easy it is to maintain an RV black water tank and how easily accessible and affordable the products are. I know there are some units out there that have dual waste water holding tanks, the same maintenance must be performed on each tank. If you have any more questions about cleaning your black water holding tank, I’d be happy to answer them.

Let us take a look at how to clean and maintain your Black Water Holding Tank.

If your travel trailer or 5th wheel is equipped with a factory installed Black Water Tank Flush, you have the means of maintaining your black water tank at your figure tips.  However when you are using your installed tank flush, remember to pay attention to the manufacturer’s directions for proper use and care of the tank flush.  If your current coach does not have a built-in tank flush.  A qualified RV service center can also add a waste water tank flush to your existing trailer’s holding tank.  This is a very simple and inexpensive alternative to using the hand-held swizzle stick/flexible wand style flushers.  If you are considering adding a tank flush, give your Central PA RV Dealer a call at 800-722-1236. You can schedule an appointment with our service department and have an easy solution installed.  So you can do away with the ‘dirty’ part of camping. And continue with the fun stuff.

Safe Travels & Happy RVing!